The reviewer’s quotation in full of Burbidge’s ‘To an Idiot Child’ has been included here for comparison.
Ambarvalia, Poems by Thomas Burbidge and Arthur H. Clough, is a somewhat remarkable volume. Mr. Clough’s portion is noticeable rather for its indications of what the writer might do than for what he has there done. Quaintness of thinking and of expression are alike marred by the effort to be too quaint. The straining after originality carries the author to the verge—and sometimes quite into the shadow f obscurity. Take the following example of his manner. —
[Quotes ‘The human spirits saw I on a day’ entire. ]
All through, Mr. Clough’s share of the volume is full of the suggestions of a poetical power which these faults continually disappoint. The following is more simple. —
My wind is turned to bitter north,
That was so soft a south before;
My sky that shone so sunny bright,
With foggy gloom is clouded o’er:
My gay green leaves are yellow-black,
Upon the dank autumnal floor;
For love, departed once, comes back
No more again, no more.
A roofless ruin lies my home,
For winds to blow and rains to pour;
One frosty night befell, and lo,
I find my summer days are o’er:
The heart bereaved, of why and how
Unknowing knows that yet before
It had what e’en to Memory now
Returns no more, no more.